Turbo Vs Super

With the green eco people interfering with the car industry concerning c02 emissions over the past decade or so, manufacturers have been dabbling with technology taken from the world of F1. Chief among them being the KERS (Kinetic Energy Recovery System), variants seen on today’s hybrid cars. I wrote a whole article on KERS for Motor Ward if you need more information on the subject.

Turbochargers are also making a comeback for the 2014 F1 season, meaning the engine displacement shrinks from the 2.4L V8 to a 1.6L V6 – to highlight the influence Ferrari have over the F1 governing body, F1 initially wanted 1.6L 4-cylinders to be used but Ferrari complained and they ended up being V6.

Turbo technology has been used by manufacturers for years, cars like the Sierra Cosworth, Ford RS 2000 and Subaru Impreza prime examples covering three decades. However, turbocharged cars of past were considered as either boyracerish, yobbish (one of my parents’ words) or cars that attracted joy riders. My dad bought me an MGB GT for a first car but wouldn’t entertain an Escort XR3i. I crashed the MG on my first legal day on the road…

So with all this talk of turbocharging cars, boosting power whilst shrinking displacement, how many of you know exactly how they work, and the difference between turbo power and a supercharger?

Click the pic to find out…

How Will F1 Fare With New 1.6L Turbo Units?


2013 will say farewell to the 2.4L V8 engines, and although displacement is down to a tiny 1.6L, KERS will still be a main component in power supply in 2014. The FIA initially wanted the replacement engine to be a four-cylinder unit, but Ferrari complained about the terrible noise they made, and being close to Bernie Ecclestone (CEO of F1) **nudge, nudge, wink wink ** it was eventually agreed the V6 would be the choice.


Pictured above is the first image released by Mercedes-Benz for the engine they’ll be using in 2014. Like the aforementioned BMW M12/13 engines, this small displacement unit will be turbocharged. That being said, the hp figures will be half of the crazy eighties era at around 750-hp. It’s reported the engines will be high-pitched, and due to the turbo spooling at 125,000-rpm, it will be very loud.  These engines also produce more torque, especially coming out of corners, so from a spectator view the sport should appear more exciting.

Throw in KERS with twice the previously regulated amount of power (80-hp for 6.7 secs upped to 161-hp for 33.3 secs) and you’ll be witnessing a true test and ability of modern science and technology.

The design and use of a completely different engine it a massive deal for an F1 team, from weight to placement, aerodynamics and a thousand other aspects. So it seems whoever is the most dominant in 2013, doesn’t necessarily guarantee success in 2014.

I’m looking forward to 2014 and can’t wait to hear the combined sound of all those turbo-powered beasts revving before the lights turn green.